Oct 24, 2013

Defense Technica Review

Lights Off
2 Mediocre
Retails for: $14.99
We Recommend: $5.99
  • Developer: Kuno Interactive
  • Publisher: Devolver Digital
  • Genre: Indie, Strategy
  • Released: Oct 24, 2013
  • Platform: Windows, Mac
  • Reviewed: Windows

There’s something special about having overview of a map, and taking the time to decide how you’re best going to defend it. In the case of Defense Technica, you have all of five seconds to figure it out before the enemy starts flooding the area.

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The premise is what’d you expect from a tower defense game, you have your core that must be protected, once it reaches zero it is game over and you must start the level over. As a safety net, if things get to be too much for you, which is very likely, you’ll want to use your Ether, a secondary one-time resource to repair your core or to bomb the enemy should they swarm you.

The game likes to remind you what the story is, each and every time you start the game. While it is skippable, is wholly unnecessary after the first time you see it.

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Waves happen non-stop, giving you no chance to pause and make proper decisions, all action is a reaction and hoping that you’ve made the best decision at the time. Maps unfold and you are able to create branching and wildly varying maze-like paths for the enemy to traverse and get cut down by your turrets.

Weather is a neat touch and provides something i haven’t seen used in tower defense. As you play, sometimes lightning disrupts your towers abilties, clouds/fog come in and reduce visibility, and the rain slows everything down. All of which have some sort of negative impact against you, making things even harder.

Defense Technica’s quite difficult, even on the inviting “normal” mode as opposed to “hardcore”, both are equally quick to hurt you if you’re not paying attention. But it does brand itself as a hardcore tower defense game, and it certainly holds up to that. While commendable, isn’t something everyone will enjoy unless they’re looking for a challenge.

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This game doesn’t look incredibly well, though. This seems partially due to the fact that this was a mobile app for Android and iOS first. There’s a distinct…fuzziness to the overall game. The transition to PC just doesn’t take technical advantage of even semi-powerful systems by using higher resolution textures and other features you’d expect a PC game to have.

Controls are a bit odd, where a gameplay requirement to purchase more towers has you picking up dropped pieces of resources that only remain for a short period. It’s simple to do, whether you’re swiping your mouse or moving the left stick to get the reticle to pick up the pieces, but feels like it should simply be an automatic action as there’s so much more you need to be paying attention to.

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I feel like I’ve played this game before, and I pretty much have, and so have you. The tower defense genre is crowded, there’s nothing new or innovative here that benefits or improves on tower defense in any meaningful way. On its own, away from comparisons is a generic, yet difficult game that elicits nothing more than frustration. My recommended purchase price is actually really close to the mobile cost, which would be more enjoyable in short bursts while on the go than staring at a monitor while stationary.

A Steam code was provided by PR for review purposes